County Commits to Broadband Expansion
Marinette County makes a financial commitment toward providing better internet access to some residents. The Board of Supervisors approved on Tuesday partnering and entering into an agreement with Packerland Broadband to establish broadband service in portions of the county along the US Highway 141 corridor at a cost not to exceed $60-thousand. Packerland is seeking a public-private partnership grant to expand broadband access to rural Marinette County with poor or no existing service. Cory Heigl with Packerland says the project would utilize radio systems on ten existing towers and could impact over 4000 households and 50 businesses. He says the initiative was sparked by a challenge from Microsoft Corporation to eliminate the rural broadband gap within the next five years.
In the event the State grant is awarded to Packerland, the money for the county’s share of the work will come from the 2018 contingency fund. Packerland hopes to have their expanded service available to their first customers in July.